Ikea already sells solar panels in nearly a dozen of its markets. Now, the furniture giant based out of Sweden is taking an even deeper plunge into the renewable-energy market, starting on its home turf. Beginning next month, Ikea will sell electricity from solar and wind parks to domestic households, for a fixed monthly fee and a variable rate as part of the Stromma "electricity subscription," owner Ingka Group tells Reuters. Svea Solar, which makes Ikea's solar panels, will facilitate things by purchasing and then reselling (without surcharge) the electricity from a European electricity exchange. The intention is to buy from solar and wind parks that aren't yet five years old, which Ingka hopes will spur more parks to be built.
A release notes customers can use an app to keep tabs on how much power they use, while those who have solar panels can track how much electricity they produce and sell back any extra. TechCrunch sees this move as aligning with other "ecofriendly" Ikea initiatives, including shifting to selling LED lights only and dumping nonrechargeable alkaline batteries. Jonas Carlehed, Ikea Sweden's sustainability chief, says the company hopes to eventually bring the opportunity to all markets. What "eventually" means remains unclear, but the release notes the company's goal is "to enable customers in all our Ingka Group markets to use and generate more renewable energy through our energy services by 2025." "We want to make electricity from sustainable sources more accessible and affordable for all," Carlehed tells Reuters. (Read more Ikea stories.)